New Rule: America’s Mass Delusion

“It’s fun to laugh at QAnon, but if you accord religious faith the kind of exalted respect we do here in America, you’ve already lost the argument that mass delusion is bad.”

Bill Maher’s take on Q and religion. Made a lot of sense in the grand scheme of things.

While he is a known Atheist, his take on the religious aspects related to QAnon: Spot-on -IMO

And it also appears this season, he is becoming more Libertarian in his thoughts, and less left wing liberal. And he challenges his left leaning guests a lot more than previously.

And last season he did claim to being Q, which I posted previously.

36 thoughts on “New Rule: America’s Mass Delusion

      1. I’m considered ‘big tent’ among Libertarians.

        There are a few litmus tests. Many purists would assert that all taxation is theft, for example. My position is that taxation beyond that necessary to support my share of maintaining the Rule of Law is theft.

        Maher supports redistribution, and that puts him outside the tent.

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        1. “In matters of style, bend like the willow, on matters of principle, stand like the oak.”

          It is pretty obvious that this aphorism is what you tell yourself to rationalize your abject obeisance to the most authoritarian and unprincipled figure to ever hold the Presidency. And that raises the question – can you even tell the difference?

          Liked by 1 person

        2. In my neighborhood, an older one dating back to 1940’s, our streets are line with huge, stately oaks. Trunks 3 to 4 feet in diameter at the base. They don’t bend, but at least four have blown over causing considerable damage to cars and houses.

          Principle is important. But recall that you are not the only principled person nor do you have necessarily have valid principles to the exclusion of others. Not a problem unless you are a congressman and have to compromise. That is how our nation was founded.

          Gingrich stripped out compromise from the political lexicon. And that is where we are now.

          Liked by 2 people

    1. You reject authoritarians but fervently support Donald Trump? There really is something wrong with this picture. And I know what it is. You define “authoritarian” positions to mean things that you don’t like. When an actual authoritarian does things you DO like, you get even more muddled.

      Liked by 1 person

        1. All of my liberties depend on the continued functioning of our democratic institutions. He did his very best to stop their functioning. Or to subvert them to his personal ends. That he largely failed is a measure of his limited talents, not of his authoritarian mindset.

          Your question tells us more about you than you realize. Your only measure is what happens to one personally. History does not look at such matters through that lens. For example . . .

          https://encyclopedia.ushmm.org/content/en/article/martin-niemoeller-first-they-came-for-the-socialists

          Liked by 2 people

          1. “People have liberty, not groups.”

            What makes up a group? In this context it is people. Unless of course they are people that disagree with you. They are only the collective group with no individuals with common interests.

            Liked by 1 person

          2. It doesn’t matter how large the group is, only individuals have rights.

            Slavery was once supported by the majority, but it was always wrong because it violated the rights of individuals no matter how popular it was.

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          3. “It doesn’t matter how large the group is, only individuals have rights.”

            Size doesn’t matter? Individuals with common interests, be it you and your wife or my extended family growing up, are what groups are composed of. Why are you ignoring that? Wait. They aren’t in YOUR group. Got it!

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          4. “What, if done by an individual, is unethical, but OK if done by a group.”

            According to some of your other posts, I would say the Capitol Insurrectionists.

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          5. Nope.

            The use of force to achieve political ends is wrong for an individual, a mob, or a political party.

            Anything that is wrong for you to do as an individual is wrong for you to do as a member of a group.

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          6. Yet you have yet to condemn the actions of the mob. Excuse me, “trespassers”. Nor laid ANY blame whatsoever at the feet of those responsible for inflaming the mob over several months. T****, Cuz Hawley, Johnson, McCarthy (though he does make Kerry look stoic), Greene, et al.

            “The use of force to achieve political ends is wrong for an individual”…

            You may want to discuss this with the AG of GA and assist in the investigation into a certain phone call.

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          7. Who is it you think Trump ‘came for?’

            Did he reduce your ability to micromanage other people’s businesses?

            Poor dear.

            Did he interfere in your choosing winners and losers in the marketplace?

            I bet that hurt.

            Did you lose some of your access to other peoples’ money?

            Or maybe you can’t tell them what recreation is allowed them?

            I know, you didn’t get to disarm them to make the other things easier.

            That must be it.

            Trump is not the authoritarian here.

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          8. If you are incapable of understanding that Trump’s assault on the Constitution and the rule of law has been the greatest threat to individual liberty that our country has experienced in decades there is no reaching you.

            We all are familiar with your favorite whines . . .

            Protect the environment – except where you fish? Tyranny!
            Try to ensure safe foods? Tyranny!
            Try to ensure safe and effective pharmaceuticals? Tyranny!
            Minimum wage requirements? Tyranny!
            Promote renewable energy? Tyranny!
            Regulate dangerous weapons? Tyranny!
            Aid to the poor from YOUR taxes? Tyranny!
            Business licenses? Tyranny!
            And on and on and on.

            In short, your very sad litany of the various impositions on “Liberty” that are inherent in an organized society in the 21st century is a laughable manifestation of your extremist self-centered view on the role of government. It seems you want all the benefits of living in an organized society but none of the responsibilities.

            Liked by 1 person

          9. People have liberty, not groups?

            Tell that to the groups of mothers whose children have been taken from them. Tell that to desperate refugees who were refused the due process required by our law. Tell that to the Dreamers whose lives have been made a living Hell to satisfy the bigotry of the Trump base. Tell that to African-American men whose liberty is infringed upon as a matter of routine and demonized by Trump for protesting their treatment. Tell that to women whose liberty to control their own bodies is under assault.

            Niemoeller was absolutely right. We need to pay attention.

            You want me to cite something personal? Something you could never do when you talked about Obama stealing YOUR liberty. Okay. Under our Constitution I have enjoyed the liberty of participating in a free and fair election where my vote was to be counted in the choosing of our government. Trump did his level best to steal that liberty from me. The fact that he failed – barely – is irrelevant to what he is.

            Liked by 1 person

  1. RE: “Made a lot of sense in the grand scheme of things.”

    Not to me. I have always believed that religion, properly understood, is an antidote for the madness of crowds.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The key words are “properly understood”.

      The history of the Jews is rife with madnesses of mobs who used God and the Church to persecute them for everything from plague, economic crises, and a lot in between.

      For me, mobs is mobs. If they are driven to kill by cult leaders, Bishops, Imams or Rabbis, the victims are still dead.

      Liked by 2 people

    2. “Not to me.”

      Not surprised.

      I thought religion was something else for the masses? Can’t recall the quote off the top pf my head.

      So radicalism of any religious form is an antidote? Interesting.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Karl Marx wrote, “Religion is the opium of the people,” sometimes translated as, “Religion is the opiate of the masses.” It was, in my view, one of his more stupid ideas.

        RE: “So radicalism of any religious form is an antidote?”

        That’s your thought, not mine.

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        1. Earlier you wrote . . .
          “I have always believed that religion, properly understood, is an antidote for the madness of crowds.”

          but now you say that Karl Marx’s expressing a very similar thought is one of his more stupid ideas.”

          How do you explain that apparent contradiction. Are you saying that you “have always believed” a stupid idea?

          Liked by 2 people

          1. RE: “How do you explain that apparent contradiction.”

            There is no contradiction. An opiate may be an antidote for pain. It is not an antidote for insanity.

            In my experience, religion serves as a repository for human knowledge. As such, it is a source of teaching and awakening, which may be why Marx didn’t like it.

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          2. Religion is a repository for human knowledge? That is, IMHO, laughable nonsense. And anyone who knows the history of how religion – particularly Christianity – has blocked the advancement of human knowledge over the centuries would find it doubly so.

            Here is a heads-up – Belief is NOT knowledge. There is no possibility of “knowledge” about unknowable propositions. Only beliefs.

            Liked by 2 people

          3. RE: “Belief is NOT knowledge.”

            No, it isn’t. The knowledge base that religion preserves, however, doesn’t require “belief.” Much of it is provable by experience.

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          4. RE: “And anyone who knows the history of how religion – particularly Christianity – has blocked the advancement of human knowledge over the centuries would find it doubly so [i.e. nonsense].”

            I know a little about the history of religion and I would say that Christianity in particular accelerated the advancement of human knowledge. In Western Civilization the intellectual giants who gave us modern science were all Christian theologians: Newton, Pascal, Copernicus, to name just three. But you can go back as far in antiquity as Pythagoras and Thales to derive the origins of modern science in religion.

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          5. RE: “What ‘knowledge base’ are you talking about?What FACT about the world would we lose if religion disappeared tomorrow?”

            Here’s just one example. Until contemporary science confirmed it, the Biblical story of The Fall, offered and preserved through longevity the notion that men and women are different, meaning they operate with fundamentally different psychologies.

            Significantly, no one needs clinical studies to confirm this basic fact. Every man and woman can confirm the observation on their own through personal experience.

            That’s what I mean by religion being a repository of human knowledge. But the point is more subtle and more complicated than even that. For example, knowledge requires teachers to be communicated.

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          6. So, people did not know that men and women are different until someone wrote down the story of the Fall? And if religion were to disappear we would no longer know anything about that? That is quite a stretch. It is such a stretch that it is not persuasive evidence that “religion serves as a repository for human knowledge.”

            It is more accurate to say that religion serves as a repository for cultural preferences and outright bigotry. In the case that you cite, the idea that patrimony is somehow the “right” way to organize human relations.

            As for science being derived from religion because some of the early giants of science were believers in this or that religion is a dog that will not hunt. The Revealed truth and dogmas of religion have always been at odds with science. They still are.

            Liked by 1 person

        2. “That’s your thought, not mine.”

          It was a question in trying to interpret your pretzel logic. Ya know a QUESTION MARK. So you avoided answering it by claiming it was MY thought. T****ian of you, trying to project your words or actions on me.

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